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SPEECH SAFARI: New Manchester teacher to visit west Africa as Fulbright scholar
by Bill Baldowski
January 22, 2014 02:13 PM | 926 views | 0 0 comments | 23 23 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Staff / Samantha M. Shal
New Manchester High School French teacher John Green works with sophomore Tyler Simmons, 16, son of Leslie Gray and Shon Simmons of Douglasville, left, and sophomore Kento Stringer, 15, son of Brian and Yoko Stringer of Douglasville.
Staff / Samantha M. Shal New Manchester High School French teacher John Green works with sophomore Tyler Simmons, 16, son of Leslie Gray and Shon Simmons of Douglasville, left, and sophomore Kento Stringer, 15, son of Brian and Yoko Stringer of Douglasville.
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As a French teacher at New Manchester High School, John Green has taught the language to many students.

Some of them have a relatively easy time picking it up while others may find it a challenge.

In June, Green will realize a dream as he will become the student when he studies another language and culture after being named recipient of a Fulbright scholarship to visit Senegal in west Africa.

Green said that although French may be the official language of much of west Africa, Wolof is the dominant native language of Senegal.

“I know French and can carry on a conversation with those who speak French,” he said.

“However, I don’t know a word of Wolof, but, language excites me and I am looking forward to learning as much Wolof as I can and the culture it has influenced.”

A 20-year language educator, who has been with New Manchester since the school opened three years ago, Green first learned of the U.S. government’s Fulbright Program last year and attended an informational meeting on it.

That meeting resulted in him submitting an application for the funding, which included completing an essay and securing letters of reference.

Last fall, he learned he had been awarded a Fulbright scholarship and, as such, will join 11 other educators who will spend the entire month of June in Dakar, the capital of Senegal, studying at the West African Research Center.

Green said his schedule in Senegal calls for the educators to spend most of each morning during their visit studying the Wolof language and culture of Senegal.

“I am always looking for ways to make my French lessons less Eurocentric,” he said.

“This trip will allow me to add some African studies to my French instruction, as there are more speakers of French on the continent of Africa as there are citizens in France.”

As with his visits to other countries, he always brings back to his classroom numerous memorabilia from those countries to help his students realize the impact of language on culture.

Green said Senegal is considered a model of democracy for other African countries.
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